Visual Analysis & SOP Final Textual Analysis & SOP Final.docx

Visual Analysis & SOP Final Textual Analysis & SOP Final.docx

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Michael Cronk Visual Analysis: House Shadow George Lucas, the creator of Star Wars, produced and released an intriguing advertisement (called House Shadow) before the premiere of the fourth installment in his Star Wars movie series, entitled Episode I, The Phantom Menace . The advertisement portrays a young boy, Anakin Skywalker, standing alone and staring at the ground. More importantly Anakin is casting a backward shadow of Darth Vader, an evil super-villain. The ad was aimed directly at Star Wars fanatics. Anyone who had seen the first three movies was familiar with Darth Vader. The advertisement’s main purposes are to spark the audience’s excitement for the upcoming movie, create buzz across social media, and offer a clue to the direction the movie will take. Episode I, released in 1999, is actually a prequel to the first three Star Wars films, which had been released between 1977 and 1983. Since The Phantom Menace was the fourth movie released, loyal viewers were familiar with Darth Vader, but did not know the identity of the young boy. By depicting a new child character and then casting a familiar adult character as its shadow, the advertisement is designed to entice Star Wars fanatics to follow the series further into the future. At first glance, the starkness of the ad -- cast almost entirely in earthy, desert tones – evokes a feeling of loneliness and isolation. After a closer look, the audience sees the large, dark shadow of Darth Vader directly behind the innocent looking boy. The looming and menacing figure foreshadows the future of this young Jedi. Seen in its entirety, the ad evokes the themes of innocence v. evil and dark v. light, consistent themes in the Star Wars movie series. The only lettering on this advertisement,
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Michael Cronk “Episode 1” is relatively small and discreetly placed in the lower left corner of the ad.
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